Navigation in immersive virtual environments with limited visibility.
This project will use immersive virtual reality (VR) environments to study visual navigation and situational awareness during mission-relevant tasks under varying levels of threat.
When exploring novel and hostile environments, soldiers must often make quick navigational decisions under threatening, high-stress conditions. There are known individual differences in both ability to learn the layout of novel environments and flexibility of strategies for navigating known environments. In addition, the US Army has invested heavily in augmented reality (AR) as a method for supporting these decisions via training and enhancement of soldier mobility and situational awareness. It is unclear, however, how navigational abilities and situational awareness are impacted by high-stress scenarios and whether AR can actually enhance performance and training as intended.
This project will investigate the three core questions:
How does a soldier’s navigational abilities change in extreme situations?
How can we best train them for these situations?
How can vision augmentation be employed to improve situational awareness?